It hasn't been a lifelong dream of mine to open a vintage store. But for most of my twenties I have adored everything vintage and dreamed about opening a store. In January 2010, I opened a vintage online store. This involved a lot of work but I loved the challenge and enjoyed sourcing and photographing the vintage clothes. I still dreamed of opening a "real life" store though. Through a lot of hard work and determination I opened the doors to my store on Washington Street in Cork on the 22nd of December 2010.
The first few months were very exciting. A few hiccups here and there but I enjoyed every minute of it. Working 6 days a week was tiring from time to time but I didn't mind. This was my baby. I loved doing every window display and had so much fun coming up with different ideas and themes. I loved sourcing new stock for every season. I loved promoting the store in different ways but most of all I loved meeting new people and talking to new customers in the store.
In November 2011 I launched the store's dress collection, The Icon Collection, and it was a big success. By the time the shop's first birthday rolled around, the shop was well known and had a loyal following. By the summer of 2012, I employed Carol to help me manage the shop as I prepared for the arrival of little Nancy. Carol did an amazing job of looking after the store and made me feel reassured that my business was in good hands while I stayed at home and got to know my little girl for the first few weeks.
Although the store had it's quiet days over the past two years, generally it did well. And I gave it my all. But it wasn't enough. I won't bore you with facts and figures but I had to make a heart wrenching decision.
You often hear people say it's harder to close a business than open a business. This is most definitely true. But I'm not a fan of procrastinating and I know when to bow out in certain situations. And that time has come.
These past few years have been very hard for some people. It's a tough ol' world we live in at the moment but despite all this I see people everyday taking risks, ignoring the negativity and being creative. And to be honest, I still consider myself to be one of those people. But for now, I'm going to take a smaller risk. At the moment, I'm working on expanding my online store. I've already sourced lots of new vintage stock and I'm working away quietly on that so you'll see a much bigger range of stock in the next few weeks. I'm excited about it. Once again I'll be surrounding myself with lovely vintage pieces. And I'll still be talking to my lovely customers. Except sometimes I might be wearing my pyjama bottoms!